Community Gardens Development

Training Series

Community Gardens Development Training (CGDT) provides community residents with technical assistance, leadership training, horticulture education and start-up materials. This training ultimately helps to carry out the mission of the Civic Garden Center, extending the impact to a broad number of people in Cincinnati. This class is also a great resource for folks interested in becoming involved in an existing community garden or vegetable gardening at home. These classes are free of charge! Many classes are hands-on workshops. CGDT is sponsored in part by the Meshewa Farm Foundation.  For information on 2019 CGDT classes contact  Click here to complete an application for the series..


*NEW* Climate Change Lecture Series

Unpredictable climate conditions are challenging the way we garden. This three-part series will increase what you need to know about plants, soil, water, and resource conservation in order to surmount the challenges a changing climate presents.  This series is offered through Communiversity. Enrollment is easy – Just a quick phone call (513-556-6932) or a few mouse clicks away at


Current Trends and Emerging Challenges in Horticulture

Thursday, October 11, 6:30-8 pm
Instructor: Greg Torres, Civic Garden Center Horticulturist
Location: The Lloyd Library
Cost: $35 per class/$90 for the series

This class will examine the environmental issues facing intensively cultured plants directly used by man for food, for medicinal purposes, or for aesthetic gratification both within and outside of the horticulture industry. We’ll talk about some basic principles for the future of horticulture so that it can truly play a beneficial and sustainable role in our homes and local environment. We’ll look at practical changes in our own horticultural decision making that will help drive market forces to become more environmentally conscious and sustainable.  This class is offered through Communiversity. Enrollment is easy – Just a quick phone call (513-556-6932) or a few mouse clicks away at


Thriving on Changes & Challenges

Thursday, October 25, 6:30-8 pm
Instructor: Greg Torres, Civic Garden Center Horticulturist
Location: Civic Garden Center
Cost: $35 per class/$90 for the series

It’s become commonplace to turn on the news and hear about remarkable weather events. These weather reports make for interesting conversation and may seem like climate disruption is happening elsewhere, but if you have a home garden you’re most likely seeing the signs of a changing climate right in your own backyard. The plants and practices that used to work just aren’t as reliable now. But we can adapt. We can instill resilience in our yards and gardens.

In this class we’ll look at some of the upcoming conditions gardeners may face and what to do about them. You’ll learn how altered seasonal conditions are affecting dormancy, acclimation and subsequent flowering and fruiting, how to mitigate the impact of more variable precipitation patterns, how to adapt what you plant and when you plant, and how to use integrated pest management strategies to deal with new pests and pathogens.  This class is offered through Communiversity. Enrollment is easy – Just a quick phone call (513-556-6932) or a few mouse clicks away at



Native Landscaping in a Changing Climate

Thursday, November 1, 6:30-8 pm
Instructor: Dr. Cory Christopher , Director of Center for Conservation
Location: Cincinnati Nature Center, Rowe Visitor Center
Cost: $35 per class/$90 for the series

Homeowners who enjoy gardening are often faced with difficult decisions at the garden center or big box store. A menagerie of plants are available for purchase, and each plant has its own specific requirements for water, sun, and soil. Although the decisions we make at the garden center may seem purely aesthetic, what most homeowners don’t realize is that the decisions we make for our yards can impact the astounding diversity of native wildlife all around us. Further, some of the choices we make in and out of our homes may actually be contributing to the negative consequences of climate change.

This course helps homeowners navigate those decisions in a low-pressure, non-judgmental way that is practical and immediately applicable. Learn about the variety of native plant species that are commercially available, specific “lazy gardening” techniques that reduce your work, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and support native wildlife, and begin identifying areas of your yard to “re-wild” and let nature regain control. Adapting human-managed landscapes to climate change is an important component to building sustainable systems. Planting native species is one step in the right direction.  This class is offered through Communiversity. Enrollment is easy – Just a quick phone call (513-556-6932) or a few mouse clicks away at

Shiitake Madness: Growing Mushrooms on Logs

Saturday, November 3, 1:00 – 2:30 pm
Instructor: Wes Duren, Co-owner of Marvin’s Organic Gardens
Cost: $30, or $50 for 2-part series (spring and fall)

This hands-on workshop focuses on the cultivation of shiitake mushrooms in the right conditions. Learn to select, harvest, inoculate and care for logs in order to grow abundant and lasting shiitake mushrooms. Japanese Shiitake farmers used to beat their logs as a form of shock to initiate mushrooms to grow! How far will you go to grow your shiitake? Logs and spawn will be provided to take home.  As an extra carrot, we also will share the best conditions to create for growing your own morel mushrooms, and what you can do to be prepared for spring inoculation.  To register, click here.



Greens Gatherings

Join us for a CGC annual event! Bring your pruners, wire-cutters and scissors and we’ll provide a bundle of fresh cut greens, some warm refreshments and holiday spirit. A limited quantity of extra greens, novelties and ribbon will be available for purchase. Cost: $30; registration is limited so reserve your spot early!  Choose from these three classes:

Bring Your Own Container

Friday, December 7, 1:00 – 3:00 pm 
Whether your container is an old family favorite, found item or recent purchase, we will help you channel your inner artist to visualize and realize a beautiful table decoration. With special attention being given to mechanics and structural elements, the sky is the limit for accents you would like to bring and include in your work. To register click here.

Table Arrangements

Saturday, December 8, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Enjoy the friendly pace and individual attention from Sue Trusty as you construct a holiday arrangement in your own container. To register, click here.

Wreaths and Swag

Saturday, December 8, 1:00 – 3:00 pm
Your neighbors will be “green” with envy when they see your beautiful door decoration! We provide greens, seasonal berries, frames, mechanics and expert instruction from Sue Trusty. Feel free to bring any embellishments to suit your taste or décor. To register click here.